Business Continuity Management (BCM)
What is Business Continuity Management (BCM)?
BCM is a form of risk management that deals with the threat of business activities or processes being interrupted by external and/or internal factors. It involves making arrangements to ensure you can respond as effectively as possible in the event of a disruption so mission-critical functions will continue to provide an acceptable level of service.
Effective business continuity can be best attained through the implementation of a BCMS (business continuity management system) aligned to its international standard, ISO 22301.
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What is the purpose of BCM?
BCM involves planning for any potential disaster by identifying potential threats to an organization and analyzing their impact on its day-to-day operations.
Effective BCM ensures the business is able to provide a minimum acceptable service in the event of a disaster, and helps preserve corporate reputation, image, and revenue.
A growing body of legislation requires businesses in essential areas to implement effective business continuity arrangements. Globally, corporate governance regulations require directors to “exercise reasonable care, skill, and diligence” to mitigate risks facing the organization.
The current cyber threat landscape has made business leaders more aware of the risks of cyber attacks and the importance of being able to respond to and recover from such attacks.
Effective BCM, based on international best-practice standards such as ISO 22301, can protect organizations from widespread business disruption in the event of a successful cyber attack.
Read about the benefits of effective BCM >>
The BCM lifecycle
Effective BCM is centered around the stages of the BCM lifecycle, and involves identifying threats, performing a BIA (business impact analysis), designing and implementing a business continuity plan, compiling documentation, measuring and testing performance, and conducting maintenance and continual improvement work.
Business continuity planning (BCP)
BCP (business continuity planning) involves the processes and procedures for the development, testing, and maintenance of business continuity plans that will enable an organization to continue operating during and after a disaster. BCP is an essential element of a BCMS.
Plans typically detail how to manage incidents that affect an organization’s business-critical processes and activities, from failure of a single server all the way through to complete loss of a major facility. BCP is a response to an enterprise-level risk assessment. Best practice for BCP is set out in ISO/IEC 22301.
Disaster recovery planning (DRP)
DRP (Disaster recovery planning) usually takes place within the BCP framework. Disaster recovery plans are often relatively technical and focus on the recovery of specific operations, functions, sites, services, or applications. A single business continuity plan might contain or refer to a number of disaster recovery plans. Best practice for disaster recovery is set out in ISO/IEC 22301.
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ISO 27031 – ICT continuity best practice
ISO 27031 provides recommendations specifically for ICT (information and communications technology) continuity management within the overall business continuity framework provided by ISO 22301. ISO 27031 makes ISO 22301 relevant to ICT but can also be used on a standalone basis should an organization wish to tackle ICT continuity management specifically.
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